I’m currently glowing with the aftermath of my fourth viewing of Marvel’s The Avengers. Until about two months ago, the movie was on the periphery of my radar. Now I have gone to see it in theaters every weekend this May, from the cool, buzzing anticipation of opening night to the heat-soaked afternoon of my Memorial Day weekend. And I have enjoyed every second of it!
Before I continue, I must post a disclaimer: I know nothing about American comics. Everything I am aware of has come from the recent slew of Marvel movies. Those are the only versions I know. I’m sure that some comic book fans out there are just waiting to pounce on my ignorance as I bubble over with fangirl enthusiasm, so I’m gonna take a leaf out of Captain America’s book and say: “Son, just don’t.” If you enjoyed the movie as much as I did, great! High five! Keep reading and know you are not alone! If you just want to point out all the discrepancies or ways that it failed as a comic book adaptation, as a film, or both, please don’t. You can keep reading if you want, but please froth at the mouth quietly.
THIS ENTRY MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS! YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED!
PROCEED AT YOUR OWN RISK!
So, now that that’s been taken care of, on to the question that I’m sure some of the people I know in real life have been asking:
It’s ironic that the three writers I look up to the most are also some of the most prolific. Mercedes Lackeyhas dozens upon dozens of novels. Many are collaborations, but many are not, and even collaborating takes a great deal of time and effort. Oddly enough, she started off as a writer of fanfiction and was a protegée of Marion Zimmer Bradley, one of the mistresses of sci-fi and fantasy. J. Michael Straczynskiwrites for 10 hours a day, every day, except on his birthday, Christmas, and New Year’s. He says, “If I don’t have an assignment, I’ll write a short story, I’ll write a spec script, I’ll write a novel. I just enjoy the hell out of it.” Out of the 110 episodes comprising Babylon 5, he wrote the scripts for 92 of them, plus all of the movies. Joss Whedon has created several cult classic television shows with some of the most unique and memorable mythologies and characters. He worked on Buffy, Angel, and Firefly as writer and director during the 2002-2003 television season, and said that he only feels his best when he’s writing:
“You know, I always get cranky when I’m not writing,” Joss admits. “I’ll be mad and I don’t know why. I just feel like I’m angry with everybody and I hate everything and life is a sham. Then I’ll realize I haven’t written anything. And rewriting doesn’t count. It has to be an original script” (Havens, 158).
I was going to write a more serious entry this week, but decided against it. I have been at the epicenter of some of my favorite shows in the past few days, so that’s where my mind has been. Since I believe in following my literary impulses, I thought I would share with you some of my favorite male characters. (I will avoid spoilers as much as I can.)
Actor: Peter Woodward
Series: Babylon 5: Crusade
Wizard, British, wry sense of humor, and black leather coats…what more could a girl ask for? Galen is a techno-mage, part of an eclectic order that uses an ancient advanced technology to simulate the effects of magic…and is pretty odd and mysterious even by the standards of that order. He’s highly independent and powerful as well as irritating to other characters in Crusade because he “shows up when he’s least wanted and most needed,” not to mention having a habit of withholding information. I love Galen’s wry, often cynical sense of humor, his crisp, precise way of speaking, and his eyes are some of the most expressive I’ve ever seen. He’s also one of my favorite character-types, what I call “the Tortured Soul.” Characters of this type have hidden histories, often tragic, that slowly comes to light over the course of the series. Galen is one of those who tries to be completely self-sufficient, but his efforts only highlight his isolation and loneliness. Which only makes me want to give him a hug. ^_^